09
Apr

On February 20, 2019 we posted about whether the Bezos’ divorce would impact SEC disclosure requirements for public companies.  In this regard, Amazon’s recent filing may offer additional support to those who wish to argue that personal matters impacting management, or a shareholder who owns a controlling stake in the company, should be disclosed. On April 4, 2019, Amazon announced via a Form 8-K filing that MacKenzie Bezos will receive as part of ...

01
Apr

SBW is pleased to report that our partner Steve Willey has been named a "BTI Client Service All-Star" for 2019. Unique among those who review or rate legal services, BTI's appellation relies only on the input of clients, predominantly major companies.  No attorney or firm can self-nominate, self-refer, nor pay to be included in this report, and peers at the bar also have no say.  Clients have the final--and only--say in the identification of those named.  To be included in ...

20
Mar

The Rights of Minority Shareholders in Washington Minority shareholders—those who don’t own a controlling interest in a corporation—frequently do not have a say in corporate financial or management decisions.  And in closely held corporations, such shareholders also may not be able to easily sell their stock.  But the law provides certain protections.  Among other things, Washington law gives minority shareholders the right to inspect certain corporate records.  Minority shareholders also have the right to bring a suit on behalf of the ...

27
Feb

When used effectively, Rule 68 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure gives defendants a powerful and often underestimated tool.  Rule 68 allows “a party defending against a claim” to serve an offer of judgment with “the costs then accrued.”[1]  The offeree then has 14 days to accept the offer, or the offer is considered withdrawn.  If the offer of judgment is not accepted and the judgment that the claimant eventually obtains “is not more favorable than the ...

20
Feb

Recently the chief executive and controlling shareholder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, and his wife, the novelist MacKenzie Bezos, announced that they will divorce.  Thus far at least the news has not had a lasting effect on Amazon’s stock price, even though investors do not know how the couple’s 16% controlling stake in the company will be affected by the divorce.  Some have suggested that investors accept the couple’s assurances that their split will be amicable.  But what if that changes?  ...

14
Oct

In this day and age, news travels fast, and news of crises travels even faster.  Take, as an example, the forcible removal of Dr. David Dao from a United Airlines flight by officers last year.  The action, in which Dr. Dao was violently dragged off a plane after being seated in order to make room for a United employee, was videoed on a passenger’s cell phone and widely distributed—resulting in a public-relations mess for United. Managing publicity around a crisis requires ...

03
Oct

Mr. David Bruce will present “Making Your Case” as part of a one-day seminar on Landslides sponsored by the Seminar Group, October 25th 2018, at the Washington Athletic Club. This seminar is an opportunity for attorneys, claims professionals, and others to learn the nuts and bolts of landslides in Washington. Slope movement events in western Washington have become more frequent and more severe over the last few decades. These, in turn, have led to more landslide litigation, enhanced oversight, and regulation of ...

01
Oct

Michele Stephen and Miles Yanick will be attending the IR Global Annual Event in London on October 13 – 16, 2018.  The focus of this event is “Communication Matters”.  Simply  put,  effective  business  communication  is  the  lifeblood  of  any  organization.  It  helps  you  convey  your  ideas;  lead,  guide,  and motivate  your  employees;  and  resolve  conflicts  and  issues.  To  tackle  this  subject,  we  will  share  experiences  and  hear  from  a  variety  of  experts  including  world  renowned top  ...

13
Sep

Disputes often arise in the middle of a deposition—such as how to allocate the time available for deposing a third-party witness, the scope of a 30(b)(6) deposition, or simply the permissibility of a line of questioning or an objection.  Although these are opportune times to call the judge for an immediate and timely ruling, parties often are reluctant to do this. Courts would obviously prefer that parties resolve discovery disputes without the court’s intervention.  Calling the judge’s chambers in the middle ...

30
Aug

Mr. David Bruce presented on the topic of Class Certification at the Seminar Group's 21st Annual Labor & Employment Law Conference on August 24th, 2018. In his presentation titled "Class Certification: The End or Just The Beginning", Mr. Bruce discussed how wage and hour class actions present issues of CR 23 commonality and predominance, highlighted in U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Wal-Mart Stores v. Dukes. These issues are often prominent in litigating certification, and many class actions settle if and after a ...